Upcoming PPS Events
Saturday May 2nd @1pm5 Branch Ave.Cost: $10; Free for PPS Members The largest of Rhode Island's municipal cemeteries, the North Burial Ground is Providence’s oldest public cemetery (dating back to 1700), and serves... read more
Friday May 8th @6pmCost: Free of Charge. Buy your own beers.Aurora: 276 Westminster St. Have you ever wished you could experience what Providence was like in its heyday during the late 19th century? Now you can! Travel... read more
The Providence Preservation Society's 2015 Festival of Historic Houses will take place this year on Saturday, June 13. The Festival showcases contemporary living in historic homes, and will guide attendees through residences... read more
Preservation News Posts
PPS Announces Spring Programming!
Tours and talks to celebrate 20th Anniversary of Most Endangered Properties Program
Over 20 years ago, PPS announced our first ever Most Endangered Properties List on the steps of the Masonic Temple in Providence. The list was initiated in order to prevent one of the city's greatest assets-its architectural heritage-from disappearing, with a call to action which was intended to promote a community understanding of historic and architectural resources within the city.
Throughout the spring of 2015, PPS will organize a series of engaging programs to highlight the major preservation stories associated with the List's 20 year history. Beginning in April, PPS will host programs at Shepard's Department Store, the Southside Cultural Center (listed as part of Trinity United Methodist Church in 1995), and the Cathedral of St. John to discuss the importance of these venues as hubs of community activity. Weekend tours will explore the North Burial Ground and recent projects in Downtown Providence, including the Arcade and George C. Arnold Building.
Retrospective Photo Exhibit to Explore History of Endangered Properties List
In May, PPS will premier a Twenty Year Retrospective Photography Exhibit at the Peerless Building in Downtown Providence to explore the program's successes, mourn the losses, and highlight sites are still struggling. While the successes outweigh the losses, each loss represents the threats which still face our city's architectural heritage and the continued need for strong advocacy and commitment to the stewardship of our historic treasures. The exhibit will feature work from the List's 20 year history (curated by AS220's Neal Walsh) along with new work by students from AS220 Youth and New Urban Arts. An opening reception will be held on the evening of Thursday, May 21. Look for more information in the coming weeks.
Endangered Properties Blog Explores Sites from Endangered List's History
|Endangered Properties Blog|
In celebration of the 20th anniversary of our Most Endangered Properties (MEP) List, PPS welcomes guest blogger, Caroline Stevens who has challenged herself to journey to 20 of our MEP's in 10 weeks! She's blogging and tweeting her way through. Follow along and share your own thoughts at ppsri.org/mep20 and on twitter (@pvdpreservation) using #mep20.
PPS Releases 2015 Most Endangered Properties List
The Providence Preservation Society (PPS) announced the 2015 Most Endangered Properties (MEP) List at the organization’s Annual Meeting on January 29, featuring historically significant properties deemed in threat of deterioration, neglect and demolition.
In a city known for its extraordinary architecture, many historic buildings are threatened by factors such as neglect, insufficient funds, adverse public policy, and inappropriate development. For 20 years, PPS has been working with concerned neighbors, preservationists, and activists to put together this annual list. In recent years, properties noted on the MEP list have reflected additional threats of the continuing recession: foreclosure, low occupancy, and a lagging market. To raise awareness of these issues, PPS has made its annual MEP list an integral part of the organization’s advocacy efforts.
2015 PPS Ten Most Endangered Properties List (in alphabetical order):
1. Atlantic Mills (1863)
2. Broad Street Synagogue (1910)
3. Cranston Street Armory (1907)
4. Grace Church Cemetery & Cottage (1834)
5. Esek Hopkins House (1756)
6. Former RIDOT Headquarters and Garage (1927)
7. Sheffield Smith House (1855)
8. St. Teresa of Avila Church (1883)
9. Kendrick-Prentice-Tirocchi House (1867)
10. Westminster Congregational Church (1901)
Many properties featured on past Ten Most Endangered Properties Lists have successfully been saved. Formerly listed properties include the Masonic Temple, the Foundry, the Shepard’s Building, and most recently, the Teste Block and Arcade. PPS is also celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the list, and will begin a program series this spring highlighting significant progress over the past two decades.
PPS Annual Meeting
The Providence Preservation Society’s Annual Meeting will be held on the evening of Thursday, January 29th, in the auditorium of the recently-restored Providence Public Library. In addition to the presentation of the 2015 Board of Trustees, PPS will be joined by former Mayor of Pittsburgh Tom Murphy to discuss his extensive experience in urban revitalization.
Currently a senior resident fellow at the Urban Land Institute, an international research organization focused on sustainable cities, Mayor Murphy leveraged over $4.5 billion in economic development by crafting effective public-private partnerships during his tenure in Pittsburgh. Since joining ULI in 2006, Murphy has written extensively on the economic impact universities and hospitals have on local economies.
The Annual Meeting will also include a celebration of the Providence Revolving Fund’s 35th Anniversary. Formed by the Providence Preservation Society Board of Trustees in 1980 as a small revolving loan fund focused on the West Side, the Revolving Fund has developed into a national model for community revitalization under the leadership of Executive Director Clark Schoettle. The Revolving Fund now serves low-to-moderate income families in four residential neighborhoods, and operates a Downtown Loan and Grant Program, helping to stimulate a diverse range of projects in Providence’s historic core.
PPS Fall/Winter Newsletter
Click here to see the full issue: Fall 2014 Newsletter (pdf)
2014 Historic Preservation Awards
On Friday, November 7, 2014 the Providence Preservation Society (PPS) will recognize the recipients of the 2014 Historic Preservation Awards. The PPS Historic Preservation Awards recognize individuals, organizations, and businesses that have maintained and enhanced the architectural heritage of Providence through preservation projects and new design. Eight preservation projects located throughout Providence will receive awards.
In addition to those projects receiving awards, PPS is honoring an individual whose vision for preservation transformed the Brown and Sharpe Company manufacturing complex into a thriving mixed use development. The late Antonio Guerra, who passed away on October 11, will receive a posthumous Community Preservation Award. Mr. Guerra purchased the complex shortly after Brown and Sharpe moved out in the 1960s, redeveloping the site’s many industrial buildings into The Foundry Corporate Office Center and Promenade Apartments. Mr. Guerra was previously recognized in the Providence Preservation Society’s 50th Anniversary Hall of Fame in 2006.
Mayoral Candidates Highlight Preservation Policy
As Providence approaches the 2014 Mayoral election, PPS believes that historic preservation should be at the forefront of candidates' policies on economic development and land use. Over the past three months, PPS has met with all current mayoral candidates with conversations touching on economic development, downtown revitalization, demolition policy, and resurrecting the Rhode Island Historic Tax Credit.
Following each meeting, candidates were given short surveys addressing the City's most pressing preservation topics.